From School Library Journal
Grade 2-4–An offhand comment from her father sets nine-year-old Harriet Bean on the path of finding the five aunts whom she has never known. This seems like the perfect start of a juicy family mystery but it never quite turns into one. When given the full story of her father's loss of his five older sisters and a clue to the whereabouts of one of them, Harriet embarks on a hasty journey of collection. Useful coincidences make the women ridiculously easy to locate; it also helps that the final two are mind readers and come seeking her. The real mystery is how the father can possibly be absentminded enough to misplace five sisters. All of them are likable characters with interesting personality quirks and gadgets: strong-woman Veronica uses pedal power to drive her circus trailer from city to city, and twin detectives Thessalonika and Japonica are masters of disguise with convincing costumes. It is these two who give Harriet the chance to solve a mystery in the sequel, which takes place at a racetrack's stables. Masquerading as a jockey, Harriet is confronted with a villain who uses glue to stick a horse's feet to the floor so that he won't run well the next day. It's contrived stuff such as this that takes most of the charm out of this easy chapter-book series.–Kathleen Meulen, Blakely Elementary School, Bainbridge Island, WA
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Praise for internationally bestselling author Alexander McCall Smith
“At a certain point in reading the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency
books, I experienced something I haven’t felt
since reading Nancy Drew books as a child. I no longer wanted to read about Mma Ramotswe: I wanted to be her.”
–The Vancouver Sun
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.